The 7 best breakfast places in Charlotte


I believe that everyone on planet Earth would agree that breakfast is not only the most important, but the best meal of the day. Between fluffy pancakes, brown and buttered toast, golden eggs cooked your way and the crispiest or fattiest bacon, there’s something for everyone.

Here are the C5 team’s picks for the seven best breakfast places in Charlotte:

(1) Owen’s Bagel

“When you’ve overslept, nothing beats a Saturday morning waiting in line at this grungy neighborhood spot. It’s easy to love the messages scribbled on the tables and walls, the hot Pure Intentions coffee in paper cups and the goofy bagel names — like Mary’s Grubby Bubby and the Gwacka Flocka Flame.” – Katie Toussaint

(2) Zada Jane’s Corner Cafe

“My go-to breakfast spot is a little diner down the street from my house where I can get two scrambled eggs and livermush for like $4. But when I want something different, I head to Zada Jane’s Corner Cafe and load up on the Bunny Rancheros — over easy eggs with black beans, home fries and chorizo topped with a pepper jack cheese queso sauce, guacamole, salsa and sour cream. And a few flour tortillas to sop it all up. I’m not saying I’ve eaten it to help get over a hangover, but I have a feeling it would be effective …” – Corey Inscoe

(3) Little Spoon

“The farm-to-table menu changes so frequently that you never know what you’re going to get when you walk into this cozy, cute hole in the wall. You could end up with the best bowl of steaming shakshuka in your life, or the easiest blend of oats and quinoa.” – Katie Toussaint

(4) Poppy’s Bagels

“No matter how long the line, Poppy’s is worth it. I always stick with a bacon, egg and cheese on a sesame bagel — side of cream cheese of course. They have incredible sides (potato hash, fruit, cookies, muffins, etc.) plus fast service. If you haven’t been yet, RUN.” -Sallie Funderburk

(5) Earl’s Grocery

“Honestly, I love this lively Elizabeth grocer-meets-restaurant any time of day. But I’m an especially big fan of its breakfasts. It’s an easy weekday meeting spot for a latte and a warm, fresh scone. And it’s my go-to weekend destination for the Grit Bowl (topped with a farm egg, obviously) or the ham, brie and apricot jam biscuit.”  – Sarah Crosland

(6) Terrace Cafe

“Spicy chicken biscuits with pimento cheese, and bacon….do I really need to say more? Ok I will because they also have red velvet waffles with cream cheese icing. The breakfast is so good it’s enough to get me to leave NoDa early in the morning.” – Tyler Blackshaw

(7) Flying Biscuit Cafe

“There has never been a time that I have visited Flying Biscuit and did not order a short stack of buttermilk pancakes with a side of creamy, dreamy grits (yes, that is actually what they’re called). I have friends and family that order something new every visit and are never disappointed. I know I would enjoy trying something new, too, but every time I try, I find that I can’t resist the cafe’s sweet pancakes and buttery white grits, and the occasional melt-in-your-mouth, fluffy biscuit sprinkled with sugar, of course.” – Me

Photos: Davie Henshaw/Charlotte Observer, T. Ortega Gaines/Charlotte Observer, Mark Hames/Charlotte Observer


  1. I don’t know why people love Zada Jane’s. The coffee is weak, my eggs are always overcooked, and I’ve never had anything there that’s crave worthy.

    • Not to mention, you should probably order a day early if you expect to get your breakfast in a decent amount of time

  2. You need to try Stacks on Monroe road near Matthews. They have authentic, fresh squeezed orange juice on site. You can watch them make it if you like. No sugar added, just delicious juice straight from the orange to your glass. (The French toast is excellent too.) Expect a wait on weekends, especially Sunday.
    Bagels? Blah!

  3. Every time I went into Poppy’s it was filthy and I saw so many (major) violations happening I had to stop going. They have good begals, but it was too disgusting to continue to go.

  4. Zada Jane’s sucks. They are a waste of space in a prime location. Echoing what people above have said- food is always cold when I finally receive it… a day late! Never giving them business again. I’ll take my money to Dandelion Market down the street – always great food, hot and on time 🙂


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